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A 63-year-old neighborhood strip mall will be demolished to make way for a CVS pharmacy at the intersection of Bird Road and Red Road. Shopper Sue Koger and store owners Diania DeValle and Bob Penna talked about the coming closing of the unnamed shopping center.
Another major intersection in Miami will have a CVS drugstore and a Walgreens located across the street from each other. Like gas stations and home improvement stores seem to cluster, so do major drugstore chains.
Walgreens is already on the northwest side of the intersection of Bird Road and Red Road. On the southwest side, a 63-year-old neighborhood strip mall will be demolished to make way for another CVS pharmacy.
The unnamed shopping center is home to a string of mom and pop enterprises that have served the surrounding population for years.
"Oh my word," says shopper Sue Koger. "This is like Miami, this is an old, old area. It is a lot of very decent store owners, proprietors, you know, I will miss them."
Out by January will be a sandwich shop, antique store, health food store, a cake shop, a tailor, a beauty parlor, and a karate academy.
The nearby iconic Allen’s Drugs store, which is just east of the strip mall, will not be closing.
Inside Beehive Natural Foods workers behind the counter brew up smoothies and lots of other natural goodies. Store owner Bob Penna has been in place since 1980. He is going to move further west on Bird Road. Longtime customer Rhonda Rodriguez says "to lose this atmosphere is just sad."
"At first they are disappointed,” Penna says. “Then I tell 'em about the new place. They sound encouraged."
Thirty-five year tenant Diania DeValle has relocated her shoe repair and dry cleaning business north on Red Road. She says some of her old customers have found her new location, at 2248 Southwest 57th Ave., which is also Red Road.
"A closed chapter and I am starting a new book," says DeValle, who tears up when she talks about friendship she had with fellow store operators and her customers that flocked to the little center especially during lunch hours. "Yes, I will miss everybody. It was like one big family."
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